Installing XP destroyed Windows Vista hard disk

greg

New Member
#1
Hello,

I had a Windows Vista on my 400GB SATA HD. Then I decided to install Windows XP onto a separate Seagate 80GB IDE HD (empty, formatted in Vista). To be sure, I pulled out the cable from the Vista hard drive as it would not be there. I installed WinXP onto the 80GB HD with my WinXP install CD. WinXP then worked fine.

Then I plugged back the cable into the Vista HD. After I booted up with WinXP and
tried to see the Vista HD in windows explorer I got the message: The drive is not
formatted! And WinXP asked if I want to format it. I could not access any data on my
Vista disk!!!

So I restarted my computer, and tried to boot through Vista HD. After the BIOS info
it comes only a dark screen with blinking cursor and the HD's led is lighting continously. But it does not load anything and does not start Vista!!

So I have no more access to my data on my 400GB Vista HD!! I tried to install newer
service pack 3 on WinXp and mainboard drivers.. but I cannot access my data from
WinXP, at the same time I cannot boot Vista. :frowning:( I tried the Vista boot CD, but even
this could not recognize any Vista installed on my computer.

Please help!! How could I access my data? How could I boot Vista again? How could I read the files from WinXP on Vista HD? In the worst case, is there any program which could help to rescue my files from the Vista HD?

Many thanks in advance!!
 
#2
xp distroyed vista hard disk

If you can't boot the drive you may still be able to slave the drive ( a number of ways ) to copy the data
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#3
Welcome to NeoSmart Technologies, greg & tdcramer!

greg, it sounds like your disk isn't plugged in right - take it out, make sure the jumpers on it and the XP drive are both set to "Cable Select" and plug it back in... If both drives are set to "Master" then what you're seeing is typical behavior.
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#4
CG, The Vista HDD is SATA, so won't have jumpers to set incorrectly.
Greg,
Have you tried to boot the Vista HD with the IDE disk disconnected.
I've had a problem in the past (quite different circumstances) where my Vista SATA couldn't be detected by "repair startup" when the IDE disk was connected, but was fine as soon as the IDE was removed.
Check to see, then we'll see how it goes from there.
 

mqudsi

Mostly Harmless
Staff member
#5
My apologies - didn't pay attention to the SATA reference... Terry is right, it's not a jumper issue.

Terry, I had that same problem you did - it has to do with the MBR on the IDE drive (even if isn't the boot drive, the first IDE, or anything to do with the boot process) being old/incompatible with Vista.

I solved it by zeroing out the first 446 bytes of the MBR via a Linux Live CD:
Code:
dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sda bs=446 count=1
I believe it was a standard XP MBR but for some reason it had stopped Vista from loading.....

After doing this, the Vista drive will need to be selected as the boot drive in the BIOS.
 

greg

New Member
#6
Hello everyone!

MANY thanks to all of you! I applied the following advised by Terry:

I've had a problem in the past (quite different circumstances) where my Vista SATA couldn't be detected by "repair startup" when the IDE disk was connected, but was fine as soon as the IDE was removed.

And now I can reboot my windows vista again, and there I find all of my data! Yeah!! :smile:
There is something I've learnt: BACKUP! So my next step is to go and buy an external HD, plug in via USB, and make backups regularly...

thanks again!
 

Terry60

Knows where his towel is.
Staff member
#7
Happy you're back OK again.